Dazed and confused on the Mae Wang / Samoeng loop

Discussion in 'Northern Thailand - Road Trip Reports' started by Champasak, Feb 1, 2003.

  1. Champasak

    Champasak Ol'Timer

    Dazed and confused on the Mae Wang / Samoeng loop
    « on: Jun 2nd, 2002, 7:44am » Quote Modify Remove

    On a recommendation from David I decided to check this one out as the inaugural ride on Lek's big bike, his spiffy newish Baja 250. The ride is basically Chiang Mai, Sanpatong, Ban Kat, and up the Mae Wang drainage to Huai Dong, north to Huai Mana, Samoeng and home. The day started as usual, at around the crack of eleven. Finding the start was the hardest part of this route I thought. From the canal road I had no clue where to go, and only a marginally better idea from Sanpatong itself. I must have spent an hour mucking around the backroads near Ban Kat until I popped out in Mae Wang itself. The highway was larger than life, I don't know how I could have missed it. Once on the road, the stretch west past the elephant camp is amazing. The valley is interesting and the road is absolutely top shelf. I was wondering why I was getting alot more waves and hand gestures on this bike. Then I realized why: everybody was telling me my lights were on (on this bike you can't turn them off). So the confusion returned somewhere near Mae Sapok. Basically a string of villages along a 20k stretch simply didn't seem to be there. Waiting to ride through Huai Tong I discovered, after finally asking directions in my pidgin Thai, that I was already quite a bit north of it in Mae Hae! Then the real fun started. I assumed the road leading north to Bo Kaeo would be paved. It isn't So it took me awhile until I finally started up the gravel track over the ridge that separates the two towns. After that the navigation back to Samoeng was dead easy. After loading up on noodle soup in Samoeng I started the easy ride back to Hang Dong and home. With the sun at my back and finally a chance to experience this section without rain, it was a quick fun blast back. All in all, a classic and a good 'intro' into something a bit more off the beaten track. Makes me think a great 'project' might be to do Chiang Mai - Mae Hong Son.... all on backroads. We'll see.

    GT-Rider Newbie

    Keep The Power On

    Posts: 23
    Re: Dazed and confused on the Mae Wang / Samoeng l
    « Reply #1 on: Jun 3rd, 2002, 9:08am » Quote Modify Remove

    Glad you did the Mae Wang / Samoeng loop mate. It's a good fun ride, with beautiful scenery. For anyone who has done the Samoeng loop & been impressed, have a go at the Mae Wang loop and you'll be even more impressed with the scenery and hill tribe villages.
    If you're doing the Mae Wang loop, there are a couple of things to note though
    (1) You have to do a bit of dirt (through an old abandoned tin mine), but the asphalt / dirt roads are clearly marked on the Mae Hong Son loop map. Take a look at you'll see that red = asphalt & orange = dirt.
    (2) If you take the canal road south from Chiang Mai, it isn't that easy to pick up route 1013 coming out of Sanpatong. Your best bet is to take route 108 south from Chiang Mai & just turn right in Sanpatong at the traffic lights, where the signs say Mae Wang.

    Lee, if you're interested in doing the Wiang Pa Pao (road bike) loop with me on Tuesday, pls give me a ring. It should be fun, I was out on the Samoeng loop this arvo & the weather was glorious.

    « Last Edit: Jun 4th, 2002, 3:06am by Davidfl »
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